Amanda Overmyer - "Back in the USSR"
Idol may want to get rid of The Rock n' Roll Nurse by making her sing first, but she ain't goin' without a fight! And the fight is gonna take place in a roadhouse, with Amanda brandishing a pool cue in one hand and a broken bottle of Busch Light in the other! Amanda rocked this tune pretty hard. It wasn't really anything new for her, but I was entertained, and it's refreshing to see this hard rockin' of a gal on Idol.
Kristy Lee Cook - "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away"
I thought the dress looked like a cheap Halloween costume - you know, the slutty female vampire, or something. This was a good song choice for her vocal range, but it was pretty dull. I also think she didn't exploit her country niche, which is what she needs to do to stay alive - secure the country music vote.
David Archuleta - "The Long and Winding Road"
The 12-year-old girl who subscribed to Bop! magazine is still inside me (somebody call an exorcist) and she melts when David performs. I'm glad he picked a song that was comfortably in his wheelhouse, and he successfully recovered from stumbling around blindly like Stevie Wonder last week. I think we'll see scores of girls - an Archuleta Army - sobbing in hysterics like Sanjaya's famous fan before this season is over.
Michael Johns - "A Day in the Life"
I thought this was hot, almost as hot as Taylor Hicks' version. I don't know why the judges bagged on him so bad. Are Simon and Randy just jealous? Did Michael refuse to join Paula in her hot tub? This song is kind of a roller coaster ride like "Bohemian Rhapsody" and I thought he handled the mood swings well. Paula blamed the "monitor in the ear" syndrome for Michael's shortcomings, only to discover he didn't have a monitor in his ear, and then she didn't quit when she was behind when it came to explaining herself. Michael handled clarifying that point without being snippy and then made a death dedication to ensure he'll be back next week.
Brooke White - "Here Comes the Sun"
What could be sunnier than sunny Brooke singing this song in dress that's yellow like the sun. Pardon me while I go into sugar shock. Like Simon, I found this whole performance cliched. "Whoo!" sang Brooke, and that was the only thing that kept me awake during her song. I feel extra-cynical for disliking her, but I do. I really do. And that's OK because Brooke will still pray for me.
David Cook - "Daytripper"
OK, the fake rocker is kinda growing on me. I think his use of the vocoder was a shout out to his longtime fan and Cher scholar - Nerdia. I am starting to "believe" myself. If David had more sex appeal, Michael Johns would probably have been sent home by now, but he doesn't, so the battle of the rocker boys will wage on.
Carly Smithson - "Blackbird"
I was hoping Jason Castro would do this song. Carly did an OK job with it, but it didn't really show off her vocal power and her attempts to sing it the way Ann Wilson might fell a bit flat. The outfit made her look a bit heavy, which she isn't. It would be nice to see her wear something with sleeves for a change. We've all had enough chances to admire that Amy Winehouse tattoo. Still, she's one of the top contenders. Carly, take your broken wings, and learn to fly again.
Jason Castro - "Michelle"
With those soulful eyes, Jason can sell just about anything by gazing into the camera. This was a good song choice for him, but he still didn't stretch at all. His response to Randy's critique was that he didn't really have enough time this week, which seems weak. I know filming the Ford commercial takes a few hours, and picking out an outfit that looks like something David Cassidy might have worn on The Partridge Family took a few more hours, but that should have left a few days to go through The Beatles catalog and pick out a challenging song and practice it enough to own it. Still, he's dreamy. He got almost as many screams from the girls as young David.
Syesha Mercado - "Yesterday"
Syesha's outfit looked like what Mrs. Roper might wear to Burning Man. I was pretty bored by this performance, but the judges were complimentary, so I'm going to refrain from picking Syesha to leave this week.
Chikezie - "I Just Seen a Face"
This was a bit of a retread of last week's quiet-to-manic performance, but I have to admit I enjoyed it. He has a warm tone to his voice and a much more likable personality since he abandoned the sass. With the up tempo turn and harmonica-playing, I think he just might steal the country music vote from Kristy Lee this week. Charley Pride would be, um, proud.
Ramiele Malubay - "I Should Have Known Better"
Yikes, Ramiele beats out Brooke and Syesha for the worst dressed of the week award. She should stop letting her BFF Danny Noreaga be her stylist. Ramiele is adorable, but this performance was pretty mediocre. Will her intense fan base keep her in the game? Tune in tomorrow night to see, America...
Bottom 3: Ramiele, Kristy Lee, Chikezie
Going home: Kristy Lee
Tuesday, March 18, 2008